Must Read Money Stories for Monday, Aug. 29

by August 29, 2016


Snags in Google Fiber.

It’s been four years since Google Inc. launched its super-speedy Fiber internet service in Kansas City, the first of now seven cities the service is now offered. But it’s a far cry from where Google expected Fiber to be by now, according to USA Today. Roughly 200,000 broadband subscribers were on Google’s books in 2014–a tiny fraction of the 5 million it had anticipated within that following year. After recently postponing Fiber rollouts in two Silicon Valley cities and Portland, Ore., Google is now getting ready to cutback on staff dedicated to Fiber’s expansion, according to tech-news service The Information, which first broke the story.

Amazon’s 30-hour experiment.

Say goodbye to the usual 40 hours of work every week-that is, at least at Amazon, which plans to shave off 10 of those weekly hours for some employees. Under this 30-hours a week experiment, announced last week, these Amazon workers will receive the same benefits as full-time employees and earn three-quarters of a full-timer’s salary. Although the tech giant says the idea is to foster work-life balance, various news outlets such as Fortune noted it could also help mitigate Amazon’s reputation as a grueling, merciless place to work that was exposed by this 2015 New York Times investigation.

Google, Facebook’s rising EU costs.

News publishers in the European Union could soon have more leverage with tech companies such as Google and Facebook that might help combat the financial troubles that have ailed the media industry’s digital age-transition. The Guardian reports that, under a series of proposed government reforms, EU publishers could have greater authority to demand that Google and Facebook pay for their digital news content. This news could help tip the revenue scales in the favor of news outlets, which continue losing advertising dollars to tech giants like Google despite uptrends in online readership.

The future of Obamacare.

It’s been a steep uphill battle for the Affordable Care Act from the get-go, plagued by technical hiccups and widespread cost hikes while conservatives have been simultaneously trying to torpedo the law’s overall existence. Big spikes in health costs are coming next year for patients and insurance holders as the insurance industry continues consolidating–sometimes down to just one insurance provider for an entire area. With the clock ticking on President Barack Obama’s time at the White House, the Associated Press delved into the potential future of Obamacare and whether Hillary Clinton could feasibly keep some of the promises she’s made on the campaign trail to preserve it.